|December’s tip has been provided by Rod Jones.|
Rod has been at the forefront of the South African direct marketing industry for the past thirty years. During the past ten years he has been intimately involved in virtually all aspects of call centres and telebusiness and is active in many industry-building associations and activities. Recognised as one of South Africa’s foremost call centre consultants, Rod is a frequent presenter of papers at local and international conferences.
Setting up and managing a call centre can be a costly and risky business but with professional, on-going planning and monitoring, costs can be justified, revenues maximised and risks minimised. Lack of such planning and monitoring is certainly the key reason why call centres fail.
Many call centres have been designed and built to handle inbound calls and as such, they are structured to provide services of a responsive nature. By adding a proactive dimension to call centre activities (outbound calling), fixed costs can be more easily covered – often with surprisingly positive results.
It can take very little extra resource to design outbound campaigns, to set up the required work-flows and to train agents accordingly. If agents can be ‘blended’ (to handle both inbound and outbound campaigns) they will be more stimulated and motivated and will suffer less from ‘burn-out’. As a consequence, costly agent attrition, recruitment and training will be minimised.
In summary, if your focus is inbound, don’t forget to think outbound.